Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Shiraoi Ainu Village

Sakura in late Spring

Our family decided to go to Japan a month after the earthquake and tsunami. If anything, by visiting Japan helps boost their economy, a lot.

Sis and I at a convenience store, picking up fash mags.

So the first stop was an aboriginal habitat in Hokkaido. Situated next to the forest of kotan is Porotokotan, which means the village beside the big lake (Lake Poroto).

Ainu Village

We were introduced to their houses, such that in most cases, all the huts in the olden days are built in the exact same manner, where both the exterior and interior (called Qi-sei) design are identical. In fact, even the positioning of the furniture is the same too. Everything is placed in one direction.

Part of the Ainu's lifestyle include barter trading. Villagers trade bear skin in exchange for salmon.

Real salmon hung above our heads as we listen to the stories.

These salmon were caught in fall and dried in Summer. The hut do smell like fish. But not that kind of fishy. Hur.

Our very cute and lively host

The wood shavings are used as decorations to chase away the evil spirits.

Hi dad.

The Ainu museum showcases some of the past tools.

Before exploring the vicinity, we watched the traditional Ainu folk dance that feature songs and dances that evoke the natural splendor of the North, such as iyomante rimse (a ceremonial dance for sending bears' spirits back to heaven), saroruncikap rimse (a crane dance), and an Ainu musical instrument mukkari (mouth harp).

 Saroruncikap rimse - the crane dance

Picture with the Ainu

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